Clan Mac Domhnall

lan Mac Domhnall is a large and powerful clan with territory stretching across the southern Hebrides, from Islay to the Isle of Arran. The clan's numbers and territory have given it a critical position in the politics of the Isles and western Highlands.


Clan Mac Domhnall takes its name from Domhnall Mac Raghnuill, whose father was styled "King of the Isles" and "Lord of Argyll and Kintyre". Domhnall's grandfather, Somhairle, was styled "King of the Hebrides", and was killed campaigning against Malcolm IV of Scotland at the Battle of Renfrew in 1164. Through Somhairle, the clan can trace its decent back to Conn of the Hundred Battles and many of the ancient High Kings of Ireland.

Clan Domhnall shares descent from Somhairle with Clan Mac Dugall, who trace their lineage from his elder son, Dugall mac Somhairle. The two kindreds are sometimes commonly referred to as the Clan Somhairle. Furthermore they are descended maternally from both the House of Godred Crovan and the Earls of Orkney, through Somhairle's wife, Ragnhildis Ólafsdóttir, daughter of Olaf I Godredsson, King of Mann and the Isles and Ingeborg Haakonsdottir, daughter of Haakon Paulsson, Earl of Orkney.

The clan is still led by its founder, though he is now an old man. Domhnall has named his son, Aonghas Mor, as tanist, and an orderly succession is almost assured.



Clan Domhnall controls the isle of Islay and much of Arran (which it contests with Clan Mac Suibhne) and the Isle of Jura (which it contests with clan Mac Dugall), as well as the Kintyre peninsula and small holdings elsewhere in Scotland and Ireland. This gives the clan a prime position to control traffic through the northern channel of the Irish Sea, and it maintains a sizeable fleet for this purpose.


Since the conquest of Magnus Barelegs, the Isles have owed allegiance to the King of Norway. Although direct Norwegian rule over the Isles has largely ceased, Domhnall would likely support Norway over any other crown, were war to break out.


Clan Domhnall possesses several castles to defend its people and possessions:

Kildonan castle is currently under construction on the southern tip of Arran, to guard the entrance to the Firth of Clyde. Construction appears to be proceeding slowly, however, and it is not clear when (or if) the fortress will be completed.

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